In a run-down movie theater in central Massachusetts, three underpaid employees mop the floors and attend to one of the last 35 millimeter film projectors in the state. Their tiny battles and not-so-tiny heartbreaks play out in the empty aisles, becoming more gripping than the lackluster, second-run movies on screen. With keen insight and a finely-tuned comic eye, The Flick is a hilarious and heart-rending cry for authenticity in a fast-changing world.
Scenic & Costume Design: David Zinn Lighting Design: Jane Cox Sound Design: Bray Poor Production Stage Manager: Katrina Herrmann
Playwrights Horizons’ 2012/2013 season productions are generously supported by the Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.
The Flick is the result of a Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust commission awarded by Playwrights Horizons.
The Flick is a recipient of an Edgerton Foundation New American Plays Award.
CRITIC’S PICK. HILARIOUS AND TOUCHING. Annie Baker, one of the freshest and most talented dramatists to emerge Off Broadway in the past decade, writes with tenderness and keen insight. Her writing is a great blessing to performers: The Flick draws out nakedly truthful and unadorned acting. This lovingly observed play will sink deep into your consciousness.
Ms. Baker is a master miniaturist chasing big themes — love and loyalty; kindness and cruelty; fantasy and reality. As in The Aliens and Circle Mirror Transformation, the dialogue is UNCANNILY, YOU-ARE-THERE AUTHENTIC.
—Joe Dziemianowicz, NY Daily News
ANNIE BAKER AND SAM GOLD ARE HOT TO THE TOUCH AND STILL TURNING OUT MUST-WATCH WORK. The amazing Matthew Maher plays Sam with unnerving honesty. Aaron Clifton Moten is a talent-and-a-half and a real find. Louisa Krause gives a wonderfully inventive, up-yours performance.
—Marilyn Stasio, Variety
FOUR STARS. A hypnotic, heartbreaking, micro-epic about movies and moving on. Irreducibly theatrical.
—David Cote, Time Out New York
EXHILARATING. Sam Gold’s cast is utterly in tune at every moment.
—Michael Feingold, Village Voice
PERFECTION. Annie Baker is a genuine original, the real thing. She follows last season's Uncle Vanya version with this bold absolutely mesmerizing comic drama.
We've had a blast here obtaining the props for The Flick from theaters such as NY's City Cinema, which has retired 35mm projection. One theater's trash is another theater's props for the upcoming production!
“Behold! human beings living in an underground den, their legs and necks chained so that they cannot move,… behind them a fire is blazing at a distance, and between the fire and the prisoners, men passing along the wall carrying all sorts of vessels, and statues and figures…. They see only their own shadows, or the shadows of one another, which the fire throws on the opposite wall of the cave... And if they were able to converse,… would they not suppose that they were naming what was actually before them? To them, the truth would be literally nothing but the shadows of the images.”
– Plato, Republic, Book VII
“We need more weird plays.”
– Annie Baker, from an article in The Village Voice.
A lot has been said about Annie Baker since her work first appeared on New York stages, and I don’t think it’s a stretch to think that a lot will continue to be said about her writing over the years. Her work has played all over the U.S. and internationally, every production surrounded by interviews, preview articles, program notes, college lectures, panel discussions and reviews, each one an attempt to articulate that uncanny mixture of wonder, elation and despair we experience when watching her plays. Having just spent the better part of my day in an internet rabbit-hole that a Google search about Annie led me down, I’m sitting down to write my own little piece about her, perplexed by what folks have said. Philadelphia Weekly: “If the goal of realism is to imitate life on stage, The Aliens is one of the most realistic plays to come along in quite some time.” An associate professor at Amherst: “Theater artists like Baker, perhaps now more than ever, seem committed to replicating and reenacting… [offering] an apt occasion to address the proliferation of ‘real-life’ based reenactments, our desires for realism, and the forms that promise to deliver it.” Time Out New York: “[Baker’s] heartbreaking works of staggering focus have actually rescued realism from the aesthetic scrap heap.”
Each time you go to the movie theater these days, it is increasingly unlikely that you will be sitting down to watch a film. Many recent movies (Slumdog Millionaire, The Social Network) were shot with digital cameras, and many more are on their way. But even movies shot on film (The Master, Lincoln) are increasingly shown via digital projector. In 2009, only 15% percent of movie screens world-wide were digital. Today, it’s 65%, and by 2015, it will be 85%.